My own AR….the admin reality…

Just so I can have some virtual support…a cyber high five or amen.



If you’re a new administrator, I feel as if someone should point out something you’re about to experience…the admin reality. While there is a lot of (rightly deserved) focus placed on climate, culture, & visionary leadership…there is another side of leadership. The not not so shiny side…where there aren’t a ton of books offered at Barnes & Noble to guide ya through or twitter chats that you can learn it all from.

Master schedules. Policy update meetings. Code of conduct training. RTI discussions. Duty discussions.

The BTS reality check. There are a LOT of departments that need your ear in the coveted BTS time. While not nearly as exciting as staff development planning, there are some tips that can get you through with your sanity and make it as worthwhile as possible.

  1. Make sure you eat breakfast. Nothing more distracting than your tummy growling. Take your own snacks….is there anything worse than getting all excited about cracker jacks to find there is only peanut butter crackers? (Not that I won’t have some..but you know…)
  2. Take a file folder and some paper tabs. If you get hand outs, you’re going to need to reference them once you get back to school.
    hoving them in your bag so that they are all crumpled will just make you cranky when you actually do need that discipline flow chart come April.
  3. Create a document or note on your phone with the presenters from your sessions listed. Note their departments as well. This will assist you when trying to recall exactly what you were supposed to do.
  4. Laugh at their jokes. They know that you are in a ton of meetings. They are interjecting humor in an attempt to make it more fun for you…give them an appreciative giggle for their efforts.
  5. Make connections! Smile at your district people. Say good morning. Ask how their vacation time went. Take the time to listen. Go enjoy the non rushed lunch that is a HUGE perk of your day.


May your meetings be swift, your presenters amusing, and your notes full of clarity!


silver lining looking,



  1. Beth said:

    Amen! I just started as a principal on July 1, and some days are a bit overwhelming with new learning. Thanks for the reality check that it’s normal. And yes, my master schedule could use some love. ๐Ÿ™‚

    July 30, 2013
    • @8amber8 said:

      Thanks, Beth! I do love tabbing and filing away all my new notes tho! Makes me feel prepared for my year! ๐Ÿ™‚

      August 1, 2013
  2. Gosh! I’m starting as principal on September 1, and this kind of things just make me shiver in advance… I’ll keep your advices as precious tips to survive.

    July 31, 2013
    • @8amber8 said:

      Hi Silvia! ๐Ÿ™‚ You’re going to LOVE it! I can’t believe I get paid to do what I do, ๐Ÿ™‚ Plus, the opportunity to reorganize and tabbie everything…makes my heart happy!

      August 1, 2013
  3. Kathy Paiml said:

    I just started July 15 as a principal. I have meet so many district people, parents, teachers, students – my head is swimming! I’m enjoying it, but with all these meetings (which have a lot of great and needed information), I don’t have time to work on the schedules or work on my first meeting with the faculty. So much to do and not enough time! I know it will come together. I DO have a great AP – she’s a godsend!

    July 31, 2013
    • @8amber8 said:

      Heh, a goooooood AP is hard to beat, ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Good luck, and have a GREAT year!!


      August 1, 2013
  4. Rajendra Nair said:

    Nice tips. You are correct we often get so pressed with Our admin job that we tend to forget the essentials to keep us going.

    August 24, 2013

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